Jon Stewart, Stephen Colbert Reminisce About Comedy Central Days

The Late Show with Stephen Colbert_Jon Stewart - Publicity - H 2018
Scott Kowalchyk/CBS

Jon Stewart returned to the Late Show to swap places with host, and friend, Stephen Colbert. 

Sitting behind the desk, Stewart asked Colbert a number of questions. “Who the f— do you think you are?” Stewart asked first, to which Colbert responded, “A little bit like Jon Stewart.”

Stewart then praised his former Daily Show protege, saying, “You come in here every night taking in the toxins and spewing back out rainbow-colored sprinkles, and you do it beautifully.”

The duo then recalled the last time that Stewart had interviewed Colbert, way back in the early 2000s on the Daily Show when Colbert stepped in for absent guest Al Sharpton. “I just answered all the Sharpton questions,” Colbert recalled.

“Let me ask you a question about Trump, great president or greatest president?” Stewart asked.

“I think great president. There’s nothing else other than great or greatest?” Colbert answered.

"I got that joke from a show that was on years ago that came on after mine. It was hosted by this high-status conservative idiot,” Stewart responded, referencing Colbert’s work on Comedy Central’s Colbert Report.

There was more talk of Donald Trump, of course, and Colbert mentioned the time he first met the man who would be president while backstage at Jimmy Fallon’s show. “He wasn’t blustery at all,” Colbert said, to which Stewart responded, “He has that gear?”

Stewart later asked Colbert if it was difficult when he took over the Late Show after years of playing a character on the Daily Show and Colbert Report. “That was one of the challenges, that it was really me saying it,” he said. “You don’t have the character or the mask.”

Of the moment when he gained confidence as himself on the Late Show, he said, “For the interviews, I got there a little bit quicker, though not entirely, when Joe Biden was on … When he left I said, ‘That nice old man just gave me my show.’“

Colbert then recalled a conversation he had with Stewart in which he talked about replacing David Letterman as the host of the Late Show. “So, after 60 years of there being late shows … you haven’t replaced the main thing that’s been a part of them,” Colbert said of Stewart’s comments at the time.

“Well, in my defense, I’m a bit of a dick,” Stewart answered.

The duo later reminisced about their relationships with Letterman and Colbert recalled the nickname he bestowed on them: “The Cable Twins.”

Later on in the program, Colbert was also interviewed by Neil DeGrasse Tyson, Kerry Washington, Jake Tapper and Charlamagne Tha God.